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of 9/11 is a period of heightened threat. despite counterterrorism pressure against pakistan including the successful strike against osama bin laden the growth remains dangerous and vengeful. at the same time the threat from al qaeda's affiliate's and adherents around the world has increased and presents particular challenges. i am especially concerned about the threat to the united states homeland from al qaeda in the air arabian peninsula, aqap as we cut, as well as terrorist safe havens in somalia and elsewhere. this means, at least to me, that this is a crucial time for our counterterrorism establishment to be at full strength and not to be without the leader. nctc is a linchpin of this establishment. so i treat least the president has moved quickly to nominate mr. olsen, an individual serving in a senior intelligence community position today to take the helm of this organization. let me take just a moment to read the first paragraph from a letter of support from mr. olsen's nomination written by general keith alexander, that richter of the national security agency. this is a quote
on the border of pakistan and afghanistan. perhaps it's time to shut down $17 billion worth of money going for reconstruction projects when our track record really stinks when it comes to reconstruction projects. now, i hope that you all are going to convince me i've become cynical and angry and frustrated about the way we're spending money in theater and i want to tell you i'm looking for good news. i hope we hear some today. but i think it is really time for a gut check. because i've got too many people in missouri saying, why can't we fix this road? then i look at the projects that we're building in afghanistan and it's hard to explain to them why we can't fix that road because we can't afford it, but yet we can throw money away in afghanistan on projects that are clearly not sustainable and if anybody would have spent time thinking about it in the first place, they would have realized that. that kind of planning has to begin happening and that kind of accountability has to be present. i'm pleased we have a number of witnesses today that are going to testify to contracting in theaters a
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